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Jessica Johns is a Nehiyaw-English-Irish aunty and member of Sucker Creek First Nation in Treaty 8 Territory in Northern Alberta. She is the managing editor for Room magazine and a co-organizer of the Indigenous Brilliance Reading Series. Her short story “The Bull of the Cromdale” was nominated for a 2019 National Magazine Award in fiction and her debut poetry chapbook, How Not to Spill, won the 2019 bpNichol Chapbook Award. “Bad Cree” won a silver medal for fiction at the 2020 National Magazine Awards.


2020 Journey Prize Winner Jessica Johns

Award History

Jury Citation

"Jessica Johns’ 'Bad Cree' explores the truth inside a dream and the relationship between memory and grief. Where do you store a moment stuck on repeat? The narrator searches for solace while meditating on conceptual forgiveness. Her journey is not limited by self-preservation but flirts with teachings from the land, from her people, from the crow. With a dash of humour and a swift poetic hand, Johns’ prose moves, crushes, and dazzles. 'Bad Cree' is the kind of story that wakes you up in the middle of the night, purposefully and uncomfortably. Not with a question, but with an answer."
— 2020 Journey Prize Jury (Amy Jones, and Doretta Lau, and Téa Mutonji)

Works recognized by WT

Bad Cree